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Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Ohio State, USC Top Two Seeds at ITA Men's National Team Indoor Championships; Qualifying Complete at Women's $100K and Men's $25K; Collegians Prosper at Cleveland Challenger

The draw has been released for this weekend's ITA Men's Division I National Team Indoor Championships in Wisconsin, with Ohio State seeded No. 1 and Southern California seeded No. 2. The Buckeyes defeated the Trojans 4-2 in Columbus on Sunday and are at home against Texas A&M tonight before heading to Madison. Unlike the women's draw, which only has eight of the 16 teams seeded, the men have always seeded 1-16 and matched those up directly, with 1 playing 16, 2 playing 15, down to 8 vs 9.

Here are the seeds:
1. Ohio State
2. Southern Cal
3. Texas
4. North Carolina
5. Florida
6. Texas A&M
7. Stanford
8. Baylor
9. Wake Forest
10. NC State
11. Michigan
12. Columbia
13. South Carolina
14. UCLA
15. TCU
16. Wisconsin

Play begins on Friday. Here's the schedule:
Texas[3] v UCLA[14] 9 a.m.
Texas A&M[6] v Michigan[11] 9 a.m.
Stanford[7] v NC State[10] noon
USC[2] v TCU[15] noon
Florida[5] v Columbia[12] 3:30 p.m.
South Carolina[13] v North Carolina[4] 3:30 p.m.
Wake Forest[9] v Baylor[8] 6:30 p.m.
Ohio State[1] v Wisconsin[16] 6:30 p.m.

There are three events this week on the USTA Pro Circuit, with the women blessed with a $100,000 tournament for a second straight week. Lexington's Top Seed Tennis Club, which hosted the 2019 ITF Grade B1 Pan American Closed for the first time time last October, is the the site of this week's event, which has drawn many of the same players that appeared in Midland.

Qualifying ended today, with Jamie Loeb(UNC), who reached the semifinals last week in Midland, Maria Mateas(Duke), Ellie Halbauer, Hanna Chang and Grace Min the American qualifiers. The top seed this week is Marie Bouzkova of the Czech Republic, with wild cards going to Cici Bellis, Irina Falconi, Claire Liu and former Kentucky star Aldila Sutjiadi of Indonesia. Seventeen-year-old Whitney Osuigwe, the No. 8 seed, is playing her first event since the Australian Open qualifying. She advanced to the second round with a 6-3, 6-3 win over Sutjiadi today.

The men have two events this week, with qualifying concluding today at the $25,000 tournament in Naples Florida. Alex Rybakov(TCU) and Evan Zhu(UCLA) are the Americans who qualified for the main draw. Former North Carolina star Jose Hernandez-Fernandez of the Dominican Republic is the top seed and he won his first round match today over 2019 French Open Junior champion Holger Rune of Denmark. Wild cards were given to Texas recruit Micah Braswell, Florida State recruit John Bernard, Martin Damm and Patrick Kypson(Texas A&M). 2019 Kalamazoo doubles champions Damm and Toby Kodat, who have not played together much since the US Open  last year, beat top seeds Hunter and Yates Johnson(SMU) 6-2, 3-6, 10-8 in the first round of doubles today.

The other men's event this week is an ATP 80 Challenger in Cleveland, with Maxime Cressy, the recent UCLA graduate, defending his title. Cressy, who is unseeded this week, defeated Luke Saville of Australia 6-3, 6-4 in first round action Monday.  Former Virginia star JC Aragone beat No. 2 seed Christopher O'Connell of Australia 7-6(5), 6-2 today, and wild card Raymond Sarmiento(USC) beat No. 16 seed Ji Sung Nam of Korea 6-3, 6-2. They will face off in the third round Thursday. Top seed Denis Kudla, a finalist last week in Dallas, will play former USC star Roberto Quiroz of Ecuador in the second round tomorrow, and former Ohio State Buckeye JJ Wolf, the No. 6 seed, will play Dallas champion Jurij Rodionov of Austria, who is unseeded again this week.